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Project Profile: CATS LYNX Blue Line Extension

CATS LYNX Blue Line Extension

photo credit: Charlotte Area Transit System


Charlotte, North Carolina

Project Sponsor / Borrower

Charlotte Area Transit System

Program Areas

Project FinanceValue CaptureTIFIA

Value Capture Techniques Sales Tax Districts

Light Rail Transit


The LYNX Blue Line Extension (BLE or "Project") will extend light rail transit service from the 9.6-mile LYNX Blue Line that opened in the South Corridor of Charlotte, North Carolina, in 2007. The BLE will be 9.3 miles in length with 11 new transit stations. Approximately 3,100 parking spaces will be provided at the four stations with parking facilities, including 3 parking garages.

The alignment will run within the existing Norfolk Southern and North Carolina Railroad (NCRR) rights-of-way from Center City Charlotte to the middle of the route where it will transition to the median of North Tryon Street/US-29. The line will remain in the median until approximately 1,000 feet north of the existing entrance to the UNC Charlotte's Charlotte Research Institute, where it will enter the campus. The BLE will terminate at the UNC Charlotte Station. Twenty at-grade crossings and 11 grade separation structures, which cross over or under roads, railroads and environmental features, are included in the Project.


Estimated Project Cost $1.16 billion

Funding Sources

FFGA - $580 million

State of North Carolina - $299.1 million

City of Charlotte NECI funds - $17.5 million

Local in-kind ROW contributions - $13.4 million

PAY-GO CATS - $70.1 million

TIFIA Loan - $180 million

Project Delivery / Contract Method


Project Advisors / Consultants

Technical Advisor - DEC Associates

Financial Advisor - Ernst & Young

Counsel - Parker Poe


  • TIFIA Legal Advisor - Nixon Peabody
  • TIFIA Financial Advisor - Deloitte


Duration / Status

Commercial close was reached on September 17, 2015.

Construction began in January 2014 and is expected to be completed in 2017.

TIFIA Credit Assistance

Direct Loan - $180 million.

The TIFIA loan will be repaid with state and local appropriations

Financial Status

The TIFIA Credit Agreement was executed on September 17, 2015.

Related Links / Articles



Dee Pereira
Chief Financial Office
Assistant Director of Public Transit
Charlotte Area Transit System

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